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EU Issues Guidance for a Safe Return to the Workplace

EU Issues Guidance for a Safe Return to the Workplace

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The coronavirus epidemic has shown that implementing appropriate occupational safety and health measures and providing adequate conditions are essential in all sectors regardless of the activity. After the coronavirus outbreak, the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) had published a guidance for the workplace. Now, a couple of month later, at the end of April 2020, the EU-OSHA issued guidance on coming back to work. The goal of these non-binding guidelines is to help employers and workers to stay safe and healthy in a working environment that has been changed significantly by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The guidance covers six areas:

  1. Risk assessment and appropriate measures, which includes:
  2. Minimizing exposure to COVID-19 at work, assessing the risks, and putting control measures in place to first eliminate the risk and if that is not possible, to minimize worker exposure. Collective measures can be supplemented with individual measures such as protective equipment.
  3. Resuming work after a period of closure, making a plan for when work resumes that takes account of health and safety, carrying out adaptations, training and new procedures.
  • Coping with a high rate of absence, putting new methods and procedures in place and changing roles and responsibilities.
  1. Managing workers working from home, minimizing the risks of workers who have not been able to prepare their home workplace properly. Adapting the home environment do avoid deficiency.
  2. Involving workers, consulting workers and/or their representatives and the health and safety representatives about planned changes and how temporary processes will work in practice.
  3. Taking care of workers who have been ill, special considerations required for those workers who have become seriously ill.
  4. Planning and learning for the future, drawing up or updating the crisis contingency plans for shutdown and start-up events in the future.
  5. Staying well informed, differentiating the reliable and accurate from the vague and misleading amongst the overwhelming amount of information related to COVID-19.
  6. Information for sectors and occupations, a collection of sector specific guidelines related to COVID-19.

The guidance represents a crucial EU contribution in this important period, and will be updated regularly with reliable information as the situation evolves, to ensure that workers can return to a safe and healthy workplace environment.

By Levente Csengery, Partner, KCG Partners Law Firm

KCG Partners at a Glance

KCG Partners is a Hungarian business law firm providing a comprehensive range of legal services to international and local clients seeking local knowledge and global perspective. The firm comprises business-minded lawyers with sector-specific expertise, creating value for clients by applying a problem-solving approach and delivering innovative solutions.

The firm has a wealth of knowledge in corporate law, M&A, projects and construction, energy, real estate, tax, employment, litigation, privacy and forensics, securitization, estate planning and capital markets.

To address clients’ regional and international concerns, the firm maintains active working relationships with other outstanding independent law firms in Central and Eastern Europe, whilst senior counsel Mr. Blaise Pásztory brings over 40 years’ of US capital market and fund management experience.

KCG Partners Law Firm is the result of the teamwork of passionate and talented lawyers guided by the same principles and sharing the same values: 

  • Our most valuable asset is our people. They are the engine of our business and the key to our success.
  • We push boundaries by looking for innovative solutions that can empower our clients to achieve greater results.
  • We place our experience, commitment and professionalism to your service.
  • We are driven by our vision to shape and lead the Hungarian legal market and become a first choice law firm in our practice areas.

Firm's website: http://www.kcgpartners.com